Mamata Banerjee: Police officers in Bengal being threatened, don’t cross lakshmanrekha

On the day Union Home Minister Amit Shah is in West Bengal for a two-day visit to prepare the BJP in its fight against Trinamool Congress and Mamata Banerjee in the 2021 Assembly elections, the Bengal CM launched a massive attack on the BJP.

At the 475th administrative meeting since the Trinamool Congress government came to power – Banerjee said at Nabanna that senior police officers in the state were being threatened. She said that Central government agencies were being deployed in the state without taking the state and local police into confidence. She said that probes by Central agencies should be done informing the state police. “But without informing, they are conducting raids,” Banerjee said. This is significant on a day the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) has been conducting raids at multiple locations in Kolkata in connection with the cattle smuggling case.

The CM also added that wives of senior officers are also being transferred as a pressure tactic. She mentioned the case of former Kolkata police commissioner Rajeev Kumar, whose wife – who is an officer with the Central government – was transferred. CBI officers had reached outside Kumar’s official residence when he was the Kolkata Police commissioner in February 2019. Following this, Banerjee held an agitation in Esplanade to protest the Central government’s “encroachment” into state affairs. The CBI has alleged that Kumar had tampered with evidences during the probe in the Saradha chit fund case that was being investigated by a team headed by him. He was granted anticipatory bail by the Calcutta High Court in October last year.

“I have come to know about some other cases too, in which wives of senior officers have been transferred as a tactic to put pressure on them,” Banerjee said. She said that such pressure tactics were being used by the BJP-led Central government to wield power and control over senior officers working in Bengal.

Banerjee said that states have elected governments just like the Central government, and neither should cross the “lakshmanrekha” to enter the realm or encroach into each other’s work. “We do not interfere into the Central government’s work. We are an elected government too, and the Centre should not interfere into our work either,” she said.

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